As per our report, the global ePharmacy market (online pharmacy market) is estimated to grow to USD 146.65 billion by 2029 from USD 67.43 billion in 2024, growing at a CAGR of 16.81% between 2024 to 2029. The growing prevalence of the Internet of Things worldwide and the growing use of smartphones and tablets are the key factors driving the growth of the global online pharmacy market.
An ePharmacy is an online pharmacy that operates online and provides medicines to consumers through mail or shipping companies while maintaining patient safety. ePharmacy is also known as an online pharmacy, internet pharmacy, and mail-order pharmacy. CVS, Walgreens, and Amazon Pharmacy are a few of the notable players in the online pharmacy market and have been putting significant efforts into promoting awareness of online pharmacies for the past several years. In recent times, one of the progressive technologies in the Healthcare industry is Telemedicine, which has provided a way for people to get healthcare advice through IT. Online pharmacies help people compare prices of drugs in various portals, get medical needs from the comfort of home, find appropriate health service providers, provide medicine reminders, and inform consumers during pregnancy. Like telemedicine, ePharmacy is another technological innovation that has become a problem solver for delivering contactless medicine during pandemic days. The demand for ePharmacy has recently increased due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the steak is forecasted to continue during the forecast period.
Global ePharmacy Market Drivers:
The growing penetration of the Internet worldwide is contributing to the growth of the ePharmacy market. The penetration of the Internet has grown rapidly in the last couple of decades in many countries. The growing affordability and availability of the Internet have resulted in the increasing accessibility to the Internet to many people worldwide and helped consumers access healthcare services online and order medicines using available online platforms. According to the data published by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the global Internet penetration rate has jumped from 49.1% in 2017 to 53.6% in 2019 and the trend is expected to fuel further in the coming days owing to the growing accessibility of Internet services to people. The growing usage of the Internet is resulting in the increasing use of online channels to avail healthcare information and services, including medicines, which is one of the primary factors contributing to the increasing demand for online pharmacies as these are convenient options for consumers to purchase medicines.
The adoption of online pharmacies is growing significantly worldwide propelling the ePharmacy market growth. The convenience and accessibility of online pharmacies to purchase medicines have been playing a big role in the adoption of online channels for medicinal requirements. In the future, online pharmacies are predicted to replace traditional pharmacies to a considerable level. The recent COVID-19 pandemic has significantly boosted the adoption of online pharmacies as people have turned to online channels to buy their medications and contributing to the increasing demand for online pharmacies. During the COVID-19 pandemic, a few online pharmacy companies even include services such as telemedicine, rapid home delivery and other value-based services. Online pharmacies are a much more convenient option for people suffering from chronic diseases as these people require ongoing medication management and frequently purchase medications and the growing patient population of chronic diseases is expected to drive ePharmacy market growth. Across the world, the number of people suffering from chronic diseases is growing significantly, and the mortality burden is high from chronic diseases. According to World Health Organization (WHO), 41 million people die annually from chronic diseases.
Factors such as cost savings associated with online pharmacies, the growing aging population worldwide, increasing efforts from the governments of various countries to promote the usage of online pharmacies and integration with healthcare providers are fuelling the growth rate of the ePharmacy market. Online pharmacies are increasingly offering personalized and customized services, such as medication reminders, dosage tracking, and tailored treatment plans, to improve patient outcomes and increase customer loyalty, which is another notable factor boosting the market growth.
In addition, the high unmet needs for pharmaceutical products in developing countries and the growing penetration of e-commerce platforms worldwide favor the ePharmacy market growth. The growing trend of e-prescriptions in hospitals and other healthcare services supports the growth of the online pharmacy market. According to a survey conducted among 1055 outpatients by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) in 2018, out of 1055 participants, 872 people have said that they have an awareness of online pharmacies, and 44 had a history of purchasing medicines online.
Furthermore, the growing adoption of technological developments such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), big data analytics and others to develop new online pharmacies and upgrade the capabilities of existing online pharmacies is predicted to boost the growth rate of the ePharmacy market. The growing implementation of e-prescription, which is an easy and convenient process for pharmaceutical companies, is expected to contribute to the growth of the ePharmacy market.
Global ePharmacy Market Restraints:
The rise in fraud activities is slightly hampering the growth of the ePharmacy market. Security and privacy concerns among people and strict regulations for the sale of prescription drugs through online channels are hampering the growth of the ePharmacy market. Sales of prescription drugs through the electronics industry in North America and Europe are highly regulated. Companies must comply with various rules that could impact the growth of the ePharmacy market. Besides, not all countries have legalized the sale of prescription drugs through websites. It is believed that factors such as the unregulated sale of prescription drugs that could lead to online drug bans will lead to lower revenue in the world ePharmacy Market. Possible confidentiality, improper packaging, and failure to verify drug interactions are other significant challenges that can slow market growth.
Impact of COVID-19 on the online pharmacy market:
The COVID-19 pandemic has boosted the growth rate of the ePharmacy market. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for online pharmacy services has grown significantly due to improved accessibility, the offer of convenience and time-saving options, the reduction of the risk of infection, and the integration of telehealth capabilities. Many governments worldwide have imposed strict restrictions such as travel bans, lockdowns, border closures and social distancing. Due to these, there was limited liberty to visit traditional pharmacies during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to that, people hesitated to come outside to purchase medications due to fear of contracting the coronavirus. In such situations, people have seen online pharmacies as a promising option to buy medications and many preferred doing this. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the usage of telemedicine has also grown rapidly and has contributed to the growing demand for online pharmacies. Likewise, the COVID-19 pandemic has favored the ePharmacy market. However, the impact of COVID-19 is gradually decreasing. The ePharmacy market is still predicted to showcase a notable CAGR during the forecast period due to the increased awareness among people regarding the benefits associated with shopping medications using online channels, such as time-saving, cost-saving, reduced risk of infections and others.
Market Size Available
2023 to 2029
2024 to 2029
By Drug Type, Product Type, and Region
Various Analyses Covered
Global, Regional & Country Level Analysis, Segment-Level Analysis, Drivers, Restraints, Opportunities, Challenges; PESTLE Analysis; Porter's Five Forces Analysis; Competitive Landscape; Analyst Overview of Investment Opportunities
North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa
This research report on the global ePharmacy market has been segmented and sub-segmented based on the drug type, product type, and region.
Global ePharmacy Market - By Drug Type:
Based on drug type, the OTC drugs segment had the major share in the global online pharmacy market in 2023 and is expected to continue its domination in the worldwide market during the forecast period. The over-the-counter drugs segment is predicted to showcase a healthy CAGR during the forecast period owing to the increasing adoption of online pharmacies to purchase OTC drugs, increasing reliability and convenience of consumers. The availability of a wide range of OTC drugs is limited in traditional pharmacies and online pharmacies provide access to various OTC drugs, which is another major attribute contributing to the growth of the segment. OTC drugs are available at a cheaper price in online pharmacies compared to traditional pharmacies and due to this, consumers are showing an increased willingness to purchase OTC drugs using online pharmacies, which is fuelling the growth rate of the segment.
The prescription drugs segment accounted for a substantial share of the global ePharmacy market in 2023 and is expected to witness a notable CAGR during the forecast period. The convenience of online pharmacies to order prescription drugs, increasing awareness among consumers regarding how to use online pharmacies to order prescription drugs and personalized services of online pharmacies such as automatic refill reminders and access to licensed pharmacists who can answer questions and provide advice are primarily contributing to the growth of the prescription segment.
Global ePharmacy Market - By Product Type:
During the forecast period, the cold and flu segment is anticipated to hold a notable share of the worldwide market. The recent COVID-19 pandemic has significantly contributed to segmental growth. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for cold and flu products has grown significantly. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the awareness of people about respiratory diseases has increased notably and many have taken preventative measures such as wearing masks, washing hands frequently and taking medications for cold and flu. Currently, many consumers have shifted to using online pharmacies to order cold and flu medications instead of visiting traditional pharmacies and this trend is predicted to accelerate in the coming years and favors segmental growth. Furthermore, the convenience and cost savings of ordering medications online propel segmental growth.
The skin care segment held a considerable share of the ePharmacy market in 2023 and is anticipated to register a healthy CAGR during the forecast period, owing to the increasing concern towards beauty consciousness. On the other hand, skin care and nutrition are more lucrative segments than others. Nutrition such as vitamins and body gain and loss powder have influenced the e-pharmacies market in recent years. Also, females have an enormous demand for skin care products through e-pharmacies.
Global ePharmacy Market - By Region:
Regionally, the North American ePharmacy market accounted for the dominant share of the global market in 2023 and the domination of the North American market is expected to continue throughout the forecast period. The growth of the North American market is majorly driven by the rapid adoption of e-commerce, increasing adoption of technological developments in the healthcare industry and rising usage of online pharmacies to purchase medications by the North American population. The presence of key market participants and increasing R&D efforts by the market participants are further fuelling the growth rate of the North American market. In 2022, the U.S. ePharmacy market accounted for the largest share of the North American market, followed by Canada. During the forecast period, the U.S. online pharmacy market is predicted to showcase a promising CAGR and the growth of the U.S. market is attributed to the increasing patient population of chronic diseases and rising health consciousness among the U.S. population. The growing aging population and the presence of well-established IT infrastructure in the U.S. favor the growth of the U.S. ePharmacy market. Increasing support by regulatory bodies to promote awareness regarding the benefits of online pharmacies supports the U.S. market growth.
The APAC ePharmacy market stood as the second largest regional market globally in 2023 and is expected to register a notable CAGR during the forecast period owing to the growing patient population of various diseases, the presence of emerging economies and the large population. During the forecast period, China and India are predicted to capture the leading share of the APAC market. The growing emphasis of international market players to capture the market potential of China and India and an increasing number of local players propel the ePharmacy market growth in China and India. The implementation of new technologies and rapid penetration of web and cloud-based technologies boost the regional market growth.
The European ePharmacy market accounted for a substantial share of the worldwide market in 2023 and is expected to witness a healthy CAGR in the coming years. The growing adoption of online pharmacies to purchase medications by the European population, the increasing patient count suffering from chronic diseases, and the rising aging population across the European region propel the ePharmacy market growth in Europe. Zur Rose Group, Shop Apotheke, Pharmacy2U, and DocMorris are some of the notable companies in the European online pharmacy market. During the forecast period, Germany, France and the UK are predicted to control the leading share of the European market.
The Latin American ePharmacy market is predicted to occupy a considerable share of the worldwide market during the forecast period. The growth of the Latin American market can be attributed to factors such as the growing adoption of e-commerce platforms and increasing internet penetration are primarily driving the online pharmacy market growth in Latin America. Countries such as Brazil and Mexico play a vital role in the Latin American region and assist the region in registering a healthy CAGR.
The Middle East and Africa are expected to have a favorable CAGR during the forecast period. Growing emphasis on digitization in the healthcare sector and rising internet penetration and smartphone adoption are boosting the ePharmacy market growth in MEA. On the other hand, the UAE is estimated to showcase a healthy CAGR during the forecast period.
KEY MARKET PARTICIPANTS:
Some of the notable companies playing a crucial role in the global ePharmacy market profiled in this report are CVS Health, Walmart Stores, Inc., Walgreen Co., The Kroger Co., Rite Aid Corp, Lloyds Pharmacy Ltd., Planter, Canada Drugs, Medicate, Express Scripts Holding Company, Secure Medical Inc., Sani care A.B., Doctors Rowlands Pharmacy, Giant Eagle, Inc. AND Optus Rx, Inc.
RECENT HAPPENINGS IN THIS MARKET:
The global online pharmacy market size is estimated to be valued at USD 146.6 billion by 2029.
The global ePharmacy market size was valued at USD 57.73 billion in 2023.
The OTC drugs segment accounted for the biggest share of the global ePharmacy market in 2023.
Geographically, the APAC regional market is growing aggressively and is predicted to showcase the fastest CAGR.
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